IN 2001, THINGS CHANGED. I was several years removed from O’Sullivan Woodside and Goldmine and Krause Publications. So I published The Umphred Guide To Blues And Rhythm & Blues 45s Of The 50s under my own imprint, Monaural Press. I did it the old-fashioned way, paying a printer to make the books.
It cost me a fortune, but I knew I had a book that was gonna fly!
Then something happened.
Things changed . . .
As the first printing of The Umphred Guide To Blues And Rhythm & Blues 45s Of The 50s was for a limited edition, advanced copy, it did not have finished cover artwork. Instead it looked like this: I hand-stamped “Advance Copy” on each book. With few exceptions, all copies of this book look like this—not that most of you will ever see a copy.
When I first conceived of this book, my first—and only choice—for co-author was the legendary Val Shively. His used-record store R&B Records had been a fixture in the Philadelphia area for decades, and his knowledge of the rhythm & blues field was legendary!
So I trekked to Upper Darby, Pennsylvania (look it up) to entreat Val to join me.
He turned me down.
He sent me on my way to Grant’s Pass, Oregon.
To read more about the book and its publisher, Monaural Press: